Quiet Countries
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Quiet Countries

Band EDM Singer/Songwriter


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This band has not uploaded any videos


The best kept secret in music


"Show Preview"

"Leb Borgerson, the sole citizen of Quiet Countries, uses more pedals, loops, dials and gadgets than James Bond to handcraft each song before your eyes. His powerful, soaring voice distinguishes him as a 21st-century troubadour worth hearing".
-Karla Starr - The Willamette Week

"PDX Pop Now! 2005 Review"

"Quiet Countries, the solo project of Leb Borgerson, put on a blown-out set of Mack-truck vocals over beats and loops expertly manipulated to create moments of high drama wothy of both the psycho-histrionics in Ibsen's "A Doll's House" and the right-now teen angst on The O.C."
-Mark Baumgarten - The Willamette Week

"Show Preview"

"Quiet Countries' Leb Borgerson is one of the few one-man bands around that doesn't rely on a laptop, instead relying on actual instruments: guitars, keys and yes, a table full of boxes and wires. It all results in Portland-inspired moody atmospherics coupled with heart-attack deep bass beats."
-Michael Byrne - The Willamette Week

"Show Preview"

"Leb Borgerson imbues his solo project, Quiet Countries, with a natural conviction that hints at genius. Wielding a baritone guitar, he loops dissonant melodies with a Line 6 pedal and layers booming beats, syncing them perfectly with the mathy evilness of the guitar. His voice cuts through with tortured lines like, "We can't keep wrapping ourselves in plastic... but we try, we try, we try"; in the process, he obliterates the traditional role of the singer/songwriter, combining meaningful lyrics with modern modes of musical creation, filling out the heart that is absent in much electronic music."
-Kevin O'Conner - The Portland Mercury

""No One Makes a Sound" Review"

Monday, June 05, 2006
Quiet Countries
No One Makes A Sound

I was only familiar with Leb Borgerson from the short lived band Laserhawk. I think they broke up shortly before or after I split Stumptown. Quiet Countries is a quantum leap in a separate direction from his previous band. The band is essentially a one-man band with Leb at the helm. Quiet Countries’ music reminds me of a late era beat-centric version of the British band Hood. The sound is a mix of glitchy electronics, wrecked beats, looped guitars and acoustic instrumentation.

The artwork on the CD features the great photos by Jason Quigley of a run down mausoleum. The photos have an odd combination of solemnity and worn out tackiness. The photographs are a perfect match to the music. The music is a perfect mismatch of ruined beats, gorgeous instrumentation, and voice along with sorrow and humor.

The funniest moment on the disc is the second track “The Message.” It is not a cover of the ground breaking rap song. It is simply a phone message that somehow found its way on to Leb’s answering machine. The track features a strungout-sounding elderly woman talking about her daughter or granddaughter. She says in a slurred drawl, “She’s young though….She’s 18…. She ain’t going nowhere to party, she ain’t going nowhere in the clubs. She sure ain’t going nowhere.” The message ends with the old lady stating that she is “Burned out.” What starts out as just a funny message left by mistake by a woman with clearly her own substance abuse problems, becomes more profound and sad with each listen.

“A Wicked World” starts off with a simple beat, then a gentle acoustic guitar, and then it morphs into an electric guitar. The song is then joined by Leb’s great voice. As the song builds, a drum kit and xylophone joins the mix. The song has a great chorus, “Throw yourself to me, Know you can, Know You can, Untie my tongue to speak, a wicked world, a wicked world.” The lush instrumentation builds and swells like an ocean swallowing a drowning person. The song ends with the strains of gorgeous strings.

The best track off the album is the song “Variation on a Letter.” It starts with Leb singing against a looped guitar and the thud of a drum machine. The chorus of the song is what kills me. “We won’t escape life alive,” a fairly obvious observation, is altered by the threatening next line, “Don’t try, don’t you dare try.” The song at this point slows down as he wails over heavily delayed guitar lines, before brittle beats join the mix. The song ends in a sonic cyclone.
The quality overall is great over much of this expansive disc. After many repeated listens I am still discovering gems hidden in deep dark crevices of this album. There is a lot of music to absorb in one sitting. The album benefits greatly from many repeated listens. (Lucky Madison) (Dan Cohoon)

- A=1/F Squared Magazine

"Leb Borgerson: sole horseman of the band apolcalypse?"

[LIVE RECORDING] Bands are out. Or going out. Songwriters are ditching bandmates and cutting down to the electro skeleton crew. Guests are fine and collaborators are unavoidable...but whole bands? Dinosaurs.

And what if that were really the case, a mass death of communal music? With Leb Borgerson—a band survivor—on the side of the solo, it would be a bit harder to mourn the loss. The 27-year-old has spent much of his music-making time playing with bands like Laserhawk, Dykeritz and, currently, Alan Singley's Pants Machine. In those bands he has proved himself an able musician, but with his current project, Quiet Countries, Borgerson is something more. He is composer, player and, in a sense, band.

On his first full-length, No One Makes a Sound, Borgerson doesn't absolutely maintain his isolation (Kevin O'Connor and Lisa Molinaro of Lucky Madison labelmates Talkdemonic are featured on "A Wicked Word"). But otherwise Quiet Countries is liberated from band drama and creative conflict. "This is the first time I've just been able to do the music I was thinking of," Borgerson says, "and I really like that."

The first step in replacing the band is re-engineering its best asset: memory. Borgerson does this through the use of recall devices—delays, looping rigs, a repeater, a sampler and a drum machine—that are all linked together in a grand tangle of thick black cables, blinking boxes and knobbed pedals. It's a frightful mess, but it makes possible the one-man choir and baritone guitar orchestra that appear so often on No One Makes a Sound and in Borgerson's performances.

A Quiet Countries show, according to Borgerson, is a "live recording." That is, the instrumentation and arrangement occur almost entirely on stage. The music—the final product—is a mix of jagged deep beats, soft gloomy melodies and vocals that are an odd mix of plaintiveness, bite and hope. Save for the wisely restrained use of samples, most everything coursing through the onstage Quiet Countries tangle is off a live input, whether it be keys, a microphone or guitar. Trapped in their little boxes, the sounds that Borgerson creates are chopped, looped and remixed, resulting in an aural hall of mirrors, with Borgerson singing and playing live guitar against a backdrop of sound recorded minutes before. The vocals are pained, the instrumentation is shadowy, and by the time Borgerson has layered vocal track upon vocal track to create a choir of self-harmonization, the listener is defenseless. I'm terrified to think that I'm wrong, and bands aren't going out, just evolving into four-person versions of Quiet Countries, an exponential symphony limited only by the circuitbreakers in the basement. MICHAEL BYRNE. - Willamette Weekly

"Solo Ensemble"

For any of us annoyed by guys onstage messing around with a laptop and a rats-nest of patch chords and gadgets, “No One Makes a Sound” by Quiet Countries is the antidote. Staffed solely by Leb Borgerson, the full-length debut by this overlooked Portland act will smooth over any ill feelings toward lonely guys playing along to laptop-sequenced songs on a stage.
Built around Borgerson’s reedy voice and strummed guitar, “No One Makes a Sound” is loaded with dense atmospherics, clanging samples and programmed beats. Borgerson’s tinkering is everywhere. To his credit as a top-drawer songwriter and arranger, the layers sweep through well-written constructions (The Year of the Gun, Last Leaf on a Dead Tree, Variations on a Letter), building to emotionally ragged, stutter-rhythm breakdowns.
”No One Makes a Sound” is a clever album and an impressive debut.”
-Richard Shirk
- The Oregonian

"CD Release Show Preview"

It's a damn near checklist of Portland musicians who guest on Quiet Countries' latest album, "No One Makes a Sound"- there are peeps from Talkdemonic, Point Juncture, WA, The Snuggle Ups, and Junior Private Detective. And the one man who is Quiet Countries - Leb Borgerson - has a class act here, with a slick, confident, and dark record filled with his lilting vocals, pulled guitar notes, warm keyboards, and shuffling, moody beats."
-Erik Henriksen - The Portland Mercury

"Tablet Magazine Q.C. EP review"

A Jittery blend of heavy beats, baritone guitar and augmented vocal loops that range from desolate to downright creepy, Quiet Countries performs some strange variant of electronica that has yet to be named. Dark wave glitch pop? Intelligent kick dub Detroit techno? Whatever the category, Quiet Countries is well on his way to mastering it.
-Brian Graham - Brian Graham/Tablet Magazine

"Musicfest NW 2004 description"

With all its glitched beats and laptop-born melodic flourishes, Quiet Countries makes for a very different type of singer-songwriter than the usual coffee-house troubadours.
-Richard Shirk - Richard Shirk/The Willamette Week


"Quiet Countries EP"- 2004 Lucky Madison (Limited Edition EP)

"No one Makes a Sound"- February. 14th, 2006 on Lucky Madison / Distributed by Nail Distribution
Debut Full-Length

"Koto EP" 7"- Summer 2006 Lucky Madison Featuring A.E.D. and The Headphone Party


Feeling a bit camera shy


Quiet Countries is the one man band of ex-Laserhawk drummer Leb Borgerson. Using his voice, a baritone guitar, two looping pedals, an MPC 1000, a Casio CZ 101 keyboard, various effects pedals, and a variety of musical styles, Leb creates lushly orchestrated, uniquely written songs. In 2003 Quiet Countries released a limited edition EP on Lucky Madison Records, consisting of early versions of songs from his live set, sound experiments, and fleshed-out improvisations. In February 2006 Quiet Countries debut full-length, "No One Makes a Sound" will come out on Lucky Madison. Recorded over two years and containing most of the music in the live set since late 2002, the album continues the mood and atmosphere of the EP but is a more fully realized version of the Quiet Countries sound. Glitchy, pounding beats mix with swirling guitars, chiming glockenspiels, warm keyboards, and Leb's eerie voice. Reverent organ tones blend with Japanese zithers, pianos and strange samples to create moody, but beautiful music. Although Leb plays most of the instruments on the album, two of the best tracks are products of collaboration; "A Wicked Word" features the considerable talents of Lisa Molinaro (violin and viola) and Kevin O'Connor (drums) from Talk Demonic, and Victor Paul Nash (vibes) from Point Juncture WA. The ode to paranoia that is "If My Hands Shake" featured the beautiful voices of The Quiet Country Singers: Lauren Finbraaten, Alan Singley, Liam Kenna (The Snuggle Ups), Emilie Strange (Junior Private Detective) and Victor Paul Nash (Point Juncture WA).